A recent study has shown that people who have a warm beverage in their hands rate a stranger’s personality as warmer than those without the warm beverage and are more likely to be agreeable in negotiations. The same effect can be seen with touching soft things and being surrounded by soft colors.
Does this remind you of anything?
It reminds me of two things – my favorite massage therapist’s room and the first Waldorf classroom I walked into. Walking into both places I felt instantly at ease, agreeable, at peace and I never wanted to leave.
So, despite all those efforts we make to organize, say the right words, tell the right story and teach the right lesson, all of those efforts could be overshadowed by a room, physical objects, or physical actions that are not conducive to attentiveness, communication and learning.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if your student or your consulting client could feel receptive and peaceful when they walk into a room to learn with you?
And what if I told you that this concept is actually not new?
Although the study is recent the concept of Embodied Cognition has been around for hundreds of years in the field of natural medicine and is one of the essential tools used in Waldorf inspired classrooms. It is the reason why some spaces and relationships are more inviting and harmonious than others.
This week consider how you can incorporate the concept of Embodied Cognition into your work teaching children and adults. Think of ways in which you can infuse your office, your classroom and your home with warmth and softness. And encourage yourself to continue the things you are already doing to encourage warmth in your space.
Ten “get you started” ideas of things you can do to make your space more welcoming and peaceful (and thus all that inner work and planning received and appreciated!) are…
- Add soft colored scarves to the room
- Add candles to the room or use more natural light
- Place soft toys or toys with soft edges in the room (yes, even for adults)
- Add a portable waterfall to the room
- Place a nature table, photograph or painting with colors, objects and designs from nature in the room
- Serve warm beverages or snacks
- Provide soft chairs and rocking chairs for adults and children to sit in
- Wear soft colors made with soft natural fabrics
- Soften harsh sounds by shutting windows or doors. Let in soft sounds by opening windows or doors.
- 10. Place items around the room that reflect “softness and warmth” like feathers, tiny flowers (not bright harsh flower arrangements), silk and tea pots.
Would you like to learn more about creating the perfect learning and relationship-building atmosphere for your student(s) or client(s)? Purchase our complete Teacher Support Package or take our Consulting Course at The Avicenna Institute.
Do you want to read more about Embodied Cognition? Check out this scientific article from the magazine, Scientific American.